More hybrid, battery-electric powertrains imminent as Ford electrifies model line-up

2020 Ford Kuga studio

Finally after many, many years, Ford have announced they're bringing the Ford Escape SUV to Australia with a plug-in hybrid model. Besides the Transit EV, the company made an announcement about the launch of a bunch of other electrified consumer-facing models in the Europe market. "We have no news on other models, but rest assured, there will be more". According to Ford, despite the increase in floor height on the hybrid models, passengers will still have more headroom in the second row than they did in the previous Escape.

The self-charging Kuga Hybrid also uses a 2.5-liter four-cylinder petrol engine together with an electric motor and a lithium-ion battery pack but Ford didn't release any output figures yet, as it's expected to join the range later in 2020. The new 1.5-litre Ecoboost engine will also feature and industry-first cylinder deactivation technology for a three-cylinder engine.

The electric torque is most apparent at lower engine speeds, while the elimination of turbo lag has resulted in a larger turbocharged being fitted to deliver more power, as well as a lower compression ratio. Two distinct variants available on 2020 Ford Explorer PHEV are ST-Line and Platinum.

EV Charge - prioritizes the range extender in order to charge the battery as fast as possible. The Ford Kuga also features a 12.3-inch instrument cluster, which seamlessly integrates with the rest of the interiors.

Hans Schep, general manager, commercial vehicles, Ford of Europe, said: "Uniquely innovative and flexible, the new Tourneo Custom Plug-In Hybrid can adapt to an unparalleled variety of use cases, giving owners and operators the advantage of being able to drive in ultra-low-emissions zones and still cover the same ground between battery charges as a traditionally-powered people-mover". It has a 50km pure-electric driving range, sips 3.3L/100km and emits 75g/km.

It's not a vehicle that we often think about, but the Ford Kuga has returned for another generation. Also, Ford will offer the Escape with a plug-in gasoline-electric powertrain. Combined system output is 198 hp and Ford says that in this setup, the Escape can reach a top speed of 85 miles per hour in pure-electric mode. "If you want a vehicle that can turn heads on Friday night, and swallow your flat-pack furniture easily on Saturday afternoon, then you've found it", said Stuart Rowley, president of Ford of Europe. That would require a vehicle that might have a mid-200-mile range. There's a new Vignale-exclusive colour, Blue Panther, alongside existing triple-coat Lucid Red and Star White.

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